Former DTM racer Roberto Merhi has been announced as the second driver with the Manor Marussia F1 team today.
If one thinks about it seriously for a moment, it is quite incredible that the discussion about Carlos Sainz Jr’s Formula One future was ever up in the air.
When Roberto Merhi was cut loose from the Mercedes DTM team at the end of the 2013 season, the Spaniard was left facing a bleak future. That he took three victories on the way to 3rd in the championship upon his return to single-seaters displays just how close motorsport came to losing an excellent talent.
From the moment Red Bull junior driver Pierre Gasly secured a podium at the Formula Renault 3.5 season opener at Monza, there was a instant feeling that the drinks manufacturer had bagged another future star.
Formula Renault 3.5 title challenger Roberto Merhi has revealed that he was close to retiring from racing altogether this year.
Saturday morning’s surprise move by Red Bull to announce Sebastian Vettel’s departure, as well as the promotion of Daniil Kvyat to the “first team” may have closed doors for one famous Spaniard. But Vettel’s defection to Ferrari may also have saved the Formula One career of another Spaniard, - Carlos Sainz Jr - who is tantalisingly close to tasting success in Formula Renault 3.5 Series.
It is safe to say that it had been something of a barren couple of years for Roberto Merhi, but in these opening six weekends of FR3.5, Merhi has done much to rebuild his confidence and with it his reputation.
DAMS’ and Red Bull junior driver Carlos Sainz Jr dominated the opening race of the second Formula Renault 3.5 round at Motorland Aragon.